Saturday, February 08, 2020

The new PH Little Truck

The Le Coiffeur Pulling Team around Frank Bartholome from Georgsmarienhütte in Germany, together with Paul Harwerth of Harwerth Truck Parts from Glandorf in Germany have built a new 950kg / 2095lbs mini mod during the last spring of 2019. The Le Coiffeur Pulling Team was founded by Frank's dad Friedel Bartholome in 1986. Friedel purchased a mini mod tractor with a 350cui Chevy engine from the Netherlands. The German team competed with the tractor in the German Championship from 1986-1989. For the 1990 season, they purchased a mini from the USA with a better chassis and a much bigger blown V8 engine. The US mini was powered by a 572cui Chevy V8 engine with an 8-71 Littlefield blower on methanol fuel.
Driver Friedel Bartholome was pretty successful with the machine called ''Le Coiffeur 2''. He won the German Championship title 2 times in a row in 1990 and 1991. The biggest success for the team with the Le Coiffeur 2 was the win of the 1991 European Championship title in Great Eccleston, England. 1993 marked the last season for the Le Coiffeur Pulling in the mini mod class, after that season the tractor was sold to the Dingerink Family from Zwolle in the Netherlands and became Lambada 4. After a 3 year break, the Le Coiffeur Team returned to the pulling tracks in Germany with a new tractor in 1997. At the end of 1996, Friedel bought the old 2.5t / 5500lbs light modified tractor called ''Black Widow'' of Steen Dam from Denmark.
The light mod was powered by a Rolls Royce Napier Gazelle turbine with 1450hp from a Westland Wessex helicopter. Le Coiffeur 3 was usually a reliable tractor but that luck ended in Haßmoor, Germany 2003. During the pass, a fuel line broke and the kerosine ignited on the hot turbine. Friedel was slightly injured on his hand because of the flames from the turbine.
After that accident, the team pulled the tractor out from the competition forever.
In 1999 Friedel's son Frank has built his first own pulling tractor with a 4 cylinder Suzuki Swift engine for the 500kg modified class. Frank was successful with the garden puller in the german pulling competition. He won a couple of german championship rounds and the German Championship title in this class in 2001.
In the summer of 2002, the garden puller tractor was sold to the Venort Pulling Team from Brockhagen in Germany. During the winter of 2000, the team started to build a completely new 2.5t / 5500lbs Light Modified with a methanol fired RR Griffon MK58 engine. Frank and his guys built around 2 years on this machine. The light mod made its maiden voyage at the German Championship round in Verl 2002. The first year was more or less a learning year, to figure out the new methanol fuel system on the Griffon power plant. After all problems were sorted out, the Le Coiffeur Stage 4 was a top contender for the German Championship and European Championship title.
2004 was one of the best seasons for the Le Coiffeur Stage 4, runner up in the German Championship and at the EC in Füchtorf, Germany. 2005 was maybe one of the darkest years for the team. At the season opener in Füchtorf, the whole drivetrain of the single Griffon flew apart and damaged the chassis badly. After that, the season was over for the guys from Georgsmarienhütte. 
2005 also marked the return of Friedel Bartholome, 2 years after his fire accident in Haßmoor. During that time he built a new turbocharged Rover V12 powered tractor for the light mod division. But the tractor wouldn't run very good, after 2 seasons and a lot of problems Friedel decided to stop with pulling and to sell the tractor to the Ghost Pulling Team in Denmark.    
2006 marked the return of the single Griffon machine called "Le Coiffeur Stage 6". The 6th version received a new homemade chrome-moly tube frame with a newly constructed 2 bar roll cage and a completely new developed driveline. The engine was still the same as in 2005.
The first half of the season went very well for Frank and his Crew. They won the first 2 German Championship pulls of the season in Füchtorf and in Seifertshofen. The 2nd half was a little bit bumpy. Some problems with the ignition cost them a lots of points and shortly before the German Championship finals, they also lost the lead in the point standings. In the end, they finished in runner up position in the 2006 German Championship behind Green Monster Stage 4. 2007 wasn't better, problems again with the ignition and a crash at the Euro Cup round in Made, the Netherlands cost them a lots of points in the German Championship and in the Euro Cup. The best result in the Euro Cup was a 3rd place in Herning, Denmark in that year. In Germany, they won the round in Krumbach-Breitenthal and finished 3rd in the German Championship point standings.
The 2008 season was much better, less technical problems and some very good passes brought them a second place at the Euro Cup round in Made, the Netherlands and a first place at the Euro Cup in Putten, the Netherlands. They finished 3rd in the Euro Cup and 2nd in the German Championship points standings. 2010 marked the final season for the Le Coiffeur Stage 6, which was ended with a 3rd place at EC in Ekeröd, Sweden and a 3rd place in the German Championship. During the winter of 2010 / 2011, the team built a new light mod with a RR Griffon V12 engine.
For the next 3 years, the single Griffon dominated almost the whole German Championship and the Le Coiffeur Team achieved 3 German Championship titles in a row and the 2011 Euro Cup title.
After some wild runs during the 2013 season, the Frank and the team decided to build again a new light mod machine with a RR Griffon engine. The old Domex chassis was replaced by a new one. The new chassis had its differences with the old one. The drivers position on the new Domex chassis was more forward and the center of gravity was lower. The guys hoped for a better balance after all those changes. And it paid out,
the Le Coiffeur Stage 8 dominated again the German Championship from 2014 until 2016. The team also finished at the European Championship in 2014 and 2015 on a well 3rd place. At the end of 2016, after 6 German Championship and 1 Euro Cup title, the team decided to switch to the V8 Hemi engines. After almost 19 years with airplane engines from the Rolls Royce brand, it was time for a new challenge. After the single Griffon was sold to Benjamin Frahm from Neckarrems in Germany, the Le Coiffeur team purchased the twin KB Hemi powered light modified tractor called ''Red Painter'' of Markus Pape from Cloppenburg in Germany. But in the end, not much left of the Red Painter, because the tractor was completely new rebuilt.
The Le Coiffeur Stage 9 received a new homemade Domex wedge frame with a new homemade roll cage, new carbon fiber fenders from the Rocket Science Pulling Team from the Netherlands, a new hydraulic steering, homemade steel wheelie bars and a Rockwell rear end with CAT 966 planetaries and Humpco components from the USA. The engines and many other driveline parts were taken over from the old Red Painter. The season started well for the team with a win at the German Championship opener in Füchtorf. But the season was a close points battle between the Le Coiffeur Team and the Green Monster Team for the title in the light mod class. The Championship was decided at the final round in Berghausen, Germany. At difficult weather and track conditions, Frank Bartholome had a better run with his Le Coiffeur Stage 9 than Jannis Rüter on the single Allison V12 powered Green Monster Stage 4.  Frank Bartholome won the last round and for the 8th consecutive time the German Championship title. 
In September of 2017, the Le Coiffeur Pulling Team also purchased the Keith Black V8 Hemi powered mini mod tractor called ''Little Rascal'' of Hans Groenheide from Maasdjik in the Netherlands.
It was the first mini that the team has purchased since 1990 and the first return to the mini mod class since 1993 when Frank's dad competed in this class. The old Little Rascal was renamed into ''Le Coiffeur Stage 10'' and competed for the first time under the german flag at the German Championship finals in Berghausen 2017. It was a successful maiden run for Anke Bartholome, she won the final pull of the season there. During the winter of 2017 / 2018, the mini received some changes. The engine was completely overhauled, the chassis was rebuilt and new lighter fenders were made with new vinyl graphics on it. Shortly after the German Championship opener in Füchtorf 2018, the tractor was sold to Paul Harwerth of Harwerths Truck Parts and Trucks Service from Glandorf, in Germany.
Harwerth Truck Parts sells new and used original parts and replica items for DAF commercial vehicles throughout Europe.
But the new owner Paul Harwerth decided that the mini should continue to operate and driven by the Le Coiffeur Pulling Team. The season was not so bad, with some good results through the season, the team finished 4th in the German Championship points.
For the 2019 season, the KB Hemi of the tractor received some changes which further increased the power of the engine. That brought the driveline on the mini to the limit and also the balance wasn't very good enough anymore. After the pull in Füchtorf, Paul Harwerth and the Le Coiffeur Pulling Team decided to purchase the old Little Bandit chassis from Sven Meierjohann in Germany. Also, the little tractor was renamed from ''Le Coiffeur Stage 10'' to ''PH Little Truck''.  
The old Little Bandit chassis has a chrome-moly tube frame with a chrome-moly roll cage, a rack and pinion steering, carbon fiber fenders, chrome-moly wheelie bars and a TRB Machine & Tool sheet metal rear end from the USA. The Little Bandit chassis was built by the Bandit Pulling Team during the winter of 2013 / 2014. The Bandit Pulling Team was very successful with the BAE V8 Hemi powered mini modified tractor from 2014 until 2016 on the Dutch and European pulling tracks.They won the Euro Cup and Dutch Championship title in 2015, finished in runner up position at the 2014 European Championship in Bouconville, France and in 3rd place in the Dutch Championship in 2016. The Little Bandit also was the first mini mod with an 18-71 DMPE blower on a BAE Hemi engine in Europe.
The driver's position on the old Little Bandit chassis is more forward and the center of gravity is lower compared to the old Le Coiffeur Stage 10 chassis. The team hopes to get a better balance with this chassis in the future.
The new vinyl graphics on the carbon fiber fenders and on the fuel tank were done by Steffen Schaab of XD3SIGN from Germany.
The TRB Machine & Tool sheet metal rear end has a TRB billet aluminum center section with a TRB billet aluminum differential, a Rockwell 106 ring and pinion gear, special made steel plug axles and Wilwood aluminum brake calipers with steel brake discs.
The rear pulling wheels on the mini mod were taken over of the old Le Coiffeur mini. The wheels are a set of used Pioneer Giant Puller on used polished Real Wheel aluminum rims.
The driveline in the new PH Little Truck got a TRB gearbox with a TRB reverser, a custom built drive shaft between the reverser and the center section and an 8 inch Molinari centrifugal clutch with 3 discs. The Molinari clutch is covered by a Browell aluminum bell housing. The TRB Machine & Tool reverser and gearbox have a CNC milled billet aluminum housing with custom-built gears and shafts.
The new PH Little Truck is powered by a blown Keith Black Stage 10 V8 Hemi engine with a displacement of 8.4l on methanol fuel.
About Keith Black Racing engines:
The company called ''Keith Black Racing Engines'' was founded by Keith Black in 1959. Keith was an engineer and producer of high-performance V8 drag racing engines for drag racing and tractor pulling.
Black first made a name for himself in the mid-1940s in boat racing. He set a world record in his second time out at Salton Sea. People liked his engines, and he quickly started a business out of his garage. He opened Keith Black Racing Engines in 1959. By 1961 his boat racing exploits included nearly 50 international and national records.
Hawaiian dragster with Keith Black engine in Museo Nazionale dell'Automobile in Turin. Drag racing teams heard about his boat racing engines, and he was convinced by friend Tommy Greer to build a drag racing motor for the Greer-Black-Prudhomme Top Fuel dragster. In 1962 and 1963 the team won over 250 rounds to less than 25 losses. Black spent time in the late 1960s with Roland Leong's Hawaiian Top Fuel dragsters, and in the early 1970s with the Plymouth Barracuda Funny Car campaigned by "Big John" Mazmanian.
In 1965 Chrysler contracted Black to develop a marine racing program.
Ed Donovan introduced the specialized aluminum engine block for nitro drag racing in 1971; the "Donovan 417" was based on a 1958 Chrysler 392 Hemi. Black's aluminum engine blocks would dominate the market by the end of the decade. The engines Keith Black produced were based on the Chrysler 426 Hemi, Chevy Big Block, and Oldsmobile Big Block designs, but cut from virgin aluminum castings and built to the customer's specifications.
Keith Black died at the age of 65 years in Los Angeles, California, the USA from complications due to a brain tumor in 1991.
But back to the engine of the PH Little Truck. The power plant has a Keith Black cast aluminum engine block with Darton billet steel sleeves, a Bryant billet steel crank with CP-Carillo billet aluminum rods and pistons, a Sassy Racing cam, Veney cylinder heads with Dan Olsen Racing Products stainless steel exhaust headers, Moroso aluminum valve covers, an SSI 14-71 blower with a Veney aluminum injector scoop, a Sassy Racing methanol fuel system with a Waterman fuel pump, an aluminum sheet metal fuel tank, a Dan Olsen Racing aluminum oil pan, a Aviaid oil pump and a MSD Pro Mag 44 ignition. The KB engine should make around 2000-2500 hp with this setup.
The maiden run of the new PH Little Truck was at the 2nd German Championship round in Holzheim, south Germany last year. The team went home with a strong runner up place from the competition but also with a lot of work for the next weeks in the workshop. Shortly after the start, the oil line of the oil pump flew away from the engine, but driver Amelie Gieschen remained full on the hammer until the engine was gone. Without the lubrication, the engine hasn't survived that run. The damage was huge, a broken rod hit a hole into the block, all bearings were broken and much more parts in the engine was ready for the junkyard. During the year a new engine was built up but the team decided not to compete at the rest of the German Championship rounds in 2019.
But the new PH Little Truck will return on the German Pulling tracks again this year. Paul Harwerth and the Le Coiffeur Pulling team have planned to compete at all German Championship rounds in the year of 2020.

For further information, check here: https://www.facebook.com/LCoiffeur/





   
 

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